Sparkle Icon: Princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis

Incredible name, incredible style.

Princess Gloria von Thurn und Taxis was like the Lady Gaga of 1980s Europe – especially by the standards of her blue blood roots. In her heyday, the European press could count on Gloria for both avant garde style (vertiginous punk hair, dresses made out of teddy bears) and boundary-pushing personal antics (barking like a dog on David Letterman, getting busted for drug possession, marrying outspoken bisexual Johannes von Thurn und Taxis).

Now that religious conversion and crackpot racism have relegated Gloria to pop culture curiosity, she’s abandoned the cutting-edge looks (the exception being that great oversized chain-link necklace, at the bottom of the gallery). Still, it’s interesting to look back on her wild years. Love her style or hate it, it’s pretty cool that, despite the conformism of the European aristocracy, she used the way she looked to say something about she was and how she lived.

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